March 18, 2023
Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
Finals Media Conference
Q. Ladies and gentlemen, Patrick Glory, Princeton's first national champion since 1951. Congratulations, what are your emotions hearing you're a national champion?
PAT GLORY: It's super emotional. Means a lot to my family and the program. I just really can't put it in terms what it means. Just such an amazing feeling. A lot of hard work, not only by myself but by the community around me. Just feels really amazing.
Q. Your favorite song, Springsteen's "Glory Days." Are these your "Glory Days"?
PAT GLORY: "Glory Days" are here, I think. This is what it's all about and it just feels really surreal. Just bawling my eyes out, crying. It's really hard. It's really hard to do this.
I can't even explain what goes into it. Everyone behind the scenes. The only people that know what it means. Just really special.
Q. When you look back on your journey (indiscernible), this tournament, you placed. Now you're on the mountain. How have you progressed throughout your journey and development and the peaks and valleys to get where you are today?
PAT GLORY: It just feels really amazing. No one really knows what Ivy League kids had to go through during that COVID year. I was really, really excited about the NCAA Tournament my sophomore year. I think it would have really helped me last year coming into this tournament, knowing what to expect.
You don't realize how two years off really inhibits you from competition. And this stage is unlike any other. There's no tournament like this one. It just feels really amazing to have my last match be a national championship. It's unexplainable how amazing it feels.
Q. I know you guys have a very strong relationship with each other at Princeton -- the coaches, the team, the video staff, everybody. Talk about the culture how that's really helped you as a student, as an athlete get you to where you're at today.
PAT GLORY: It's just a really special feeling. I think the Princeton community, it's such an amazing and small community. Really tight knit. The amount of text messages I got, social media replies and shout-outs and everything. It's really special.
And you don't really -- like the Princeton heavyweight rowing team asked me what time I'm wrestling at. I don't have a connection to that team at all and they're the ones reaching out and supporting and stuff. That's just one small example. I can allude to a million examples. It's just really special.
Q. The lead you had yesterday, you can get out on anybody, you feel you can ride anybody? And obviously you get the one takedown you needed. This year (indiscernible) kind of got all three areas to that point, kind of felt like you couldn't be beat? Is that kind of the mindset?
PAT GLORY: Yeah, I mean, in that match there was a lot of adversity. I got in a couple of shots and didn't finish. It's hard. You work really hard for those shots. And you have so many. And you have to capitalize when you can.
And it's 1-0 going into the third. It's a 50/50 match right there. And I just knew that I was going to have to find a way to score and get in the driver's seat. And just found an opportunity and wrestled through the position and found a way to get on top.
And once I got that takedown I felt good about my chances. I was on top, got the riding time locked up. Just tried to stay smart, didn't get in any risky positions and just found a way to win. That's it.
Q. (Inaudible) the song? (Indiscernible).
PAT GLORY: Superstition is maybe a little petty, but as I got "Glory Days," it's a great song and everything, but I lost last year walking out to it. If you notice I sprinted out last year. Took my time, I walked.
I had the American flag. I thought that was going to get the crowd going a little bit.
It's like all my coaches, my family, everyone was saying, enjoy it. Make the most out of it. Make it an experience. Make it a show. So I just wanted to wave that flag out -- Old Glory. And that really rings true to our family.
And we had a little wooden plaque in the basement that I used to do my pushups and sit-ups every morning. And it said, I forget what it said, but, old glory may she forever wave -- along those lines. Just weird little thing like that that brings me back to my roots.
Q. First Princeton's champ since 1951. That's a long time. How does it feel breaking that streak, and when is the next Princeton NCAA champ going to be?
PAT GLORY: Hopefully next year. I think for the coaches, for us as a team, it was a barrier that we needed to break. I think it's like almost like a, what's it, when you block water. I'm for getting the word for it, like a dam. Once that dam is broken, unlimited water's flowing through there.
So I think literally the dam is broken now. And I think it's going to open up recruiting opportunities for kids like me who maybe weren't the best coming out of middle school, maybe not the best coming out of high school, but just want it. Just want to work hard and want to learn from the best guys in the country, best coaches in the country.
And, again, this school is the hardest school in the whole world. What we have to go through academically and extracurricularly, on top of trying to be a national champ, it's really, really hard. And looking back, I hope these kids recognize and say, hey, I can do this, too. Why not me?
Q. Planning on wrestling freestyle (indiscernible)?
PAT GLORY: That's the next step is figuring that out. U.S. Open is in a couple of weeks. So I think at this point it's my plan to wrestle the U.S. Open and go from there. Hopefully make an Olympic team. That would be really cool just kind of take it piece by piece, one step at a time. But I'm excited for what the future holds.
Q. (Indiscernible) the last five years meant to you. What was it like the last (inaudible)?
PAT GLORY: When I was getting recruited, I knew I wanted to go to the best academic school, on top of finding a school that has the best wrestling. It's not hard -- it's really hard to find a school that has both, especially at the highest level.
And Coach Dubuque is from my area. We grew up around the same coaches. We grew up in the same kind of household, very blue-collar household. And he just had a vision. He had a vision and something I can look back on and say, Coach Dubuque had to go through a lot of adversity. He wasn't a four time All-American then comes back wins two national championships.
That's really hard to do. I wanted it to be hard. I knew it was going to be hard. This is not easy. Trusting in Coach Dubuque, trusting in Coach Gray, trusting in Coach Ayres, everybody that's a part of the program, their families. You don't realize how much their families sacrifice, how much they hear us kind of complaining about whatever we complain about, right, because there's always something to complain about.
But at the end of the day we do this together. It is really a family. They sacrifice more than anybody can really understand or put into terms. And so I'm just so grateful for everything. And this is what it's all about. This is what makes it worth it.
Q. Having experienced this here, what was the thing that you found out today was the most important thing that you learned from being in the final last year?
PAT GLORY: I think the most important thing was just staying composed. It's like it's not going to be perfect. Thankfully leading up to this point in the tournament I kind of had a pretty good showing. I kind of had it pretty easy, for the most part.
I knew it wasn't going to be that way. I knew, emotions are tough, not everybody goes off and knocks off Spencer Lee like that. It takes cojones, and I knew he would have the same mentality coming into the match.
I knew it was going to be dogfight. And I knew it was going to be one opportunity and I needed to capitalize and I knew I was going to be ready for it when it came. And just found a way to get it done. That's it.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports